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How do I move? (UK advice needed)

Misty Avich

I have ADHD
V.I.P Member
I can't live like this any more, living below a family, being separated from them by nothing but thin, hollow, creaky floorboards, allowing everything they do to sound like elephants up there to us below. Add an energetic brat to the mix as well, makes it twice as hellish.


My whole home life is filled with abnormal use of earplugs and headphones. It's not natural to have to live like this. I have three pairs of headphones to keep me sane.

One pair has a wire that I have to plug in to the TV in my bedroom whenever I want to watch a movie, without hearing them upstairs, but I still have to put in earplugs too because the noise of them upstairs can still be heard.

The second pair is noise-cancelling headphones that I wear the most, when eating, going to the bathroom, having a bath and doing daily chores.

The third pair is a wireless pair that I Bluetooth to my phone when I want to listen to audiobooks or music. I prefer wire headphones as you don't have to keep remembering to charge them but my phone doesn't come with a headphone port, so I had no choice but to buy wireless headphones. Again I have to put in earplugs too when listening to an audiobook on the headphones because the noise of them upstairs can still be heard.

I have three pairs of earplugs that I keep in different rooms, as some activities can't be done with headphones on such as washing my hair or sleeping. I can't sleep with any headphones or earphones, as I like to lay on my side, so it has to be earplugs. The silicone earplugs are the only earplugs that stay right in my ears and block out most of their noise, as I can't get on with the foam earplugs and they still let in sound.

So you can imagine how I'm constantly changing headphones or earplugs depending on what activity I'm doing, and I'm no longer able to do activities with my husband or visitors because it involves communication, and obviously I can't hear.

So that's my life in my own home and it's getting to me. I feel totally helpless. Yes we've tried civilly making them aware of how noisy they are, we have also spoken to the landlords about it, but to no avail. They are a family with a toddler, they barely go out, they'll never change, there's nothing I can do except move.

But in this messed up country you can only move house if you have priority or are rich. We are neither prioritised nor rich, so we're stuck here forever, living in hope that they'll move eventually. But I don't think they will. It's not uncommon for families to be living in small apartments these days and they seem quite happy up there, living their weird lives and letting the brat run around and make as much din as possible every day and most the night. It's all right for them, they have nobody living above them, except maybe mice, and so they can just carry on enjoying their peaceful home upstairs.



I want to move to a place where nobody is living above us. I can't bear noise from overhead. Next door and below I can tolerate (except antisocial noise but that's the same for everyone). Noise from next door doesn't seem to hurt my ears like noise from above does. Low banging and thumping on a hollow floor above seems to make me dizzy, because I have perforated eardrums from past operations I've had on my ears, so certain tones of sound can trigger vertigo, pain or tinnitus.
 
I can't live like this any more, living below a family, being separated from them by nothing but thin, hollow, creaky floorboards, allowing everything they do to sound like elephants up there to us below. Add an energetic brat to the mix as well, makes it twice as hellish.


My whole home life is filled with abnormal use of earplugs and headphones. It's not natural to have to live like this. I have three pairs of headphones to keep me sane.

One pair has a wire that I have to plug in to the TV in my bedroom whenever I want to watch a movie, without hearing them upstairs, but I still have to put in earplugs too because the noise of them upstairs can still be heard.

The second pair is noise-cancelling headphones that I wear the most, when eating, going to the bathroom, having a bath and doing daily chores.

The third pair is a wireless pair that I Bluetooth to my phone when I want to listen to audiobooks or music. I prefer wire headphones as you don't have to keep remembering to charge them but my phone doesn't come with a headphone port, so I had no choice but to buy wireless headphones. Again I have to put in earplugs too when listening to an audiobook on the headphones because the noise of them upstairs can still be heard.

I have three pairs of earplugs that I keep in different rooms, as some activities can't be done with headphones on such as washing my hair or sleeping. I can't sleep with any headphones or earphones, as I like to lay on my side, so it has to be earplugs. The silicone earplugs are the only earplugs that stay right in my ears and block out most of their noise, as I can't get on with the foam earplugs and they still let in sound.

So you can imagine how I'm constantly changing headphones or earplugs depending on what activity I'm doing, and I'm no longer able to do activities with my husband or visitors because it involves communication, and obviously I can't hear.

So that's my life in my own home and it's getting to me. I feel totally helpless. Yes we've tried civilly making them aware of how noisy they are, we have also spoken to the landlords about it, but to no avail. They are a family with a toddler, they barely go out, they'll never change, there's nothing I can do except move.

But in this messed up country you can only move house if you have priority or are rich. We are neither prioritised nor rich, so we're stuck here forever, living in hope that they'll move eventually. But I don't think they will. It's not uncommon for families to be living in small apartments these days and they seem quite happy up there, living their weird lives and letting the brat run around and make as much din as possible every day and most the night. It's all right for them, they have nobody living above them, except maybe mice, and so they can just carry on enjoying their peaceful home upstairs.



I want to move to a place where nobody is living above us. I can't bear noise from overhead. Next door and below I can tolerate (except antisocial noise but that's the same for everyone). Noise from next door doesn't seem to hurt my ears like noise from above does. Low banging and thumping on a hollow floor above seems to make me dizzy, because I have perforated eardrums from past operations I've had on my ears, so certain tones of sound can trigger vertigo, pain or tinnitus.
Do you think they're being carelessly/intentionally anti-social or would you say they are just living as normal folk and it's the building that's the problem? If it's the former the council might be able to assist you, but will need records so keep a diary.
 
Do you think they're being carelessly/intentionally anti-social or would you say they are just living as normal folk and it's the building that's the problem? If it's the former the council might be able to assist you, but will need records so keep a diary.
Well they do go silent whenever the landlords are about.
 
I keep feeling nauseous and I think it's due to the stress of living there. I couldn't eat my lunch this morning. It sounds like they're always moving things up there, and I can barely hear the low rumbling sounds it makes but it seems to confuse my ears and cause me to feel dizzy and nauseous. I didn't have headphones or earplugs in when walking from the bedroom to the living-room but even those few seconds were hell.
It makes me hate them and everything they do, no matter how innocuous. It's called the snowball effect. I didn't hate them at first. I don't hate people unless I have a really good reason, but when people are affecting my physical and mental health even just by existing then I'm sorry but they will be on my hate list. They're lucky I'm normal enough to not cause them any trouble. I often think violent thoughts about them but don't worry I won't act on them. I do have self-control and I don't drink alcohol. It's a good thing I don't because then I might lose my self-control and do unpleasant things.
 
Misty, I have no experience of UK Council housing as I am in USA, but surely something would be possible?

Have you a library reasonably nearby that you could go out every other day or so for a few hours?
The quiet would help settle your nerves and the research possibilities are far greater than at home.
In the peace of the library, you might be learn what is available where and be able to make a plan for moving.
If you can go to the Council with a workable plan in hand, they may be more amenable?
Hoping for you!
 
Public libraries these days are always full of screaming toddlers running around, which is another sound I can't ignore. I might as well stay at home. I have my phone, maybe I can sit in the car and do research on finding a new place, although I shouldn't have to reduce to that.
I go to work during the day and that is the only place I do get some peace and quiet and not have to wear headphones - even though I work in a garage but the noises there don't upset me. Only certain sounds upset me, which includes screaming/crying toddlers, thumping sounds from overhead (but not thunder), and loud car engines or motorcycles. Otherwise I can tolerate most noises.
 
Can you be put on the council house list? Perhaps specify a semi-detached or terrace house.

Even then it's no guarantee that noise won't be an issue. We lived in a terrace house and one neighbour used to play very loud, bassy music on weekends, and on the other side the family used to argue lots.

If you drive, and perhaps fancy something different, perhaps look into van life. Then you can park in the middle of nowhere each night and be in peace.

Ed
 
I am aware that anywhere could have noisy neighbours but I don't mind wearing earplugs/headphones sometimes. Where we live, the noise is constant, day and night, always above, whichever room we're in, and there's no respite unless we go out. But no matter how often we go out they are always in when we're in, and get noisier in the evenings.
I don't think living in a van would be as easy as that. In the UK they don't make your wishes for a quiet life easy unless you're rich. We are far from rich.
 
i live in a bungalow but its bought and me and my husband can afford a mortgage because im on bus drivers wage and he on engineers wage

i dont think i would want to live below anybody either especially people who never go out and have children running around all day
 
Ironically the one factor to weigh most often is the unknown. No matter what side of the pond you're on.

Whether or not the next place you move to is any better, or worse than where you came from. Sometimes you can determine the exposures in real time in a single visit to a new place, while other times things may be somewhat different once you actually move in. (Better to check things out on a weekend when tenants are more likely to be at home).

I once realized in a matter of minutes that I made a mistake in moving to a horribly noisy place. Ended up sitting in an empty apartment for nearly an hour before accepting a loss in my deposit to skip moving in altogether. Found a much nicer- and quieter place as well.

For most people, including myself it took only one experience to learn not to live with anyone above you. Even when most second story or higher units cost that much more.
 
We have a chocolate teapot's chance of finding another place. When you're in private rented, it's hard to come out. Nobody cares. My ears are getting more and more damaged by the day from overuse of earplugs. I have headphones but sometimes they're not always practical depending on which activities I'm doing, such as hair washing, communicating and sleeping.
I'm noise-sensitive to overhead noise. The sound of their walking and everything else they do just physically hurts my ears. We have a relative staying round for a couple of nights this week, and I really cannot sit with earplugs or headphones on because then I wouldn't be able to communicate properly.
These geniuses who advise the use of earplugs and headphones seem to assume I'm a non-verbal autistic who does nothing but work on a clever project all the time and has no communication to other human beings. But I'm not. I'm chatty, sociable, etc, and when we have company I like to entertain and be sociable. I also like chatting to my husband. All this is difficult when you can't hear properly because of having to constantly wear ear defenders all the time I'm home. Yes we will go out but that's still not the point.

God I hate them upstairs.
 
Misty, is it possible to approach moving from a different angle? If you moved for your spouse/partner's (i can't remember which) access to work, for instance? One town away, north south east or west, if that wouldn't make the commute untenable?

Being from Louisiana, I don't understand British housing, but i know that the detached 1700 sq ft with garage and small yard that we have here, we would never be able to afford in Great Britain.

[Most people do not understand sensitive ears, even MME doesn't understand why I wear earplugs when we are watching TV together or when he is watching but I need to be in the kitchen. The giant sound blocking earmuffs give me migraine. Cannot understand the concept of noise-cancelling - why would I want more sound in my ears?]
 

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